Today’s Scrip-Bit   29 November 2021 Psalm 50:14.

Psalm 50:14.     Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High:

Well, mih bredrin, fighting the traffic with its numerous bad drivers, in the early morning darkness, on these wet and slushy roads is definitely not the best way to begin the work week! We all desire a bright, dry, sunshiny day to help us get back into work mode. But unfortunately, we’re stuck with what we have, and just have to make the best of it. 

At least let’s give thanks that it’s not several inches of snow or tons of rain like what has been dumped on several other communities over the weekend. And best of all, we have Jesus, our Lord and Saviour, Redeemer and Friend to boost our spirits, lift our joy and get us to wherever we must go safely and on time! Wow! Give Him some much deserved thanks and praise my fellow believers! 

That recalls the words of the psalmist Asaph as he talks about God being the judge in Psalm 50. As pertaining to not desiring blood sacrifices, God says: ‘Hear, O my people, and I will speak; O Israel, and I will testify against thee: I am God, even thy God. I will not reprove (rebuke) thee for thy sacrifices or thy burnt offerings, to have been continually before me. I will take no bullock (bull) out of thy house, nor he goats out of thy folds: 

For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I know all the fowls (birds) of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell thee; for the world is mine, and the fullness thereof. Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats? Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ (Ps. 50:7-15) 

That says it all right there my people! The Lord doesn’t want animal or blood sacrifices, but the sacrifices of our hearts and mouths, through praise and thanksgiving and the keeping of our promises. Remember what Cousin Sol says in Ecclesiastes about promises? ‘When thou hast vowed a vow unto God, defer (delay) not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed. Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than thou shouldest vow and not pay.’ (Eccl. 5:4-5) 

Words of eternal wisdom my brethren. Promises are made to be kept, especially to our God. But we have a bad habit of making promises willy nilly when we desperately want something, then not keeping them. However, God puts great store by promises, both by His and those made to Him by others. And if we don’t keep ours, He won’t keep His either, because many of them are conditional on our behaviour. Meaning, if we do such and such, then God will do so and so. 

And that’s one the reasons why many of our prayers go unanswered. We talk a big talk to God, but don’t walk the talk. So what else do we expect but unanswered prayer eh? And don’t forget about that thing called obedience; a small and piddling irritant in our eyes, but a most important element in God’s. That’s another stumbling block on which our prayers and lives falter. 

Listen to what Samuel told Saul, Israel’s first king when he failed to obey God’s command to totally destroy the Amalekites, but instead he spared their king Agag and the best of their animals. ‘And Samuel said, Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.’ (1 Sam. 15:22) 

Yes friends, that one disobedience caused Saul to lose his throne! And who knows how much we have lost through the glaring and rampant disobedience that is currently being carried out in our sinful and ungodly world, where the heathen wants to get rid of God, and too many supposed believers don’t have the parts to stand up strong and truly fight the battle on God’s behalf? 

But thankfully, our God is a good God, a forgiving and merciful God, who will forgive and administer His grace and mercy to those who are sincerely repentant. As the psalmist so rightly reminds us above. ‘Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ 

And if you don’t believe that this is a time of serious trouble in our world, then something is seriously wrong with your mental apparatus. So please, let’s take the bull by the horns, believe God’s word and go to Him right now in prayer, with sincere repentance and thanksgiving flowing from our hearts, so that He can help us in this our time of desperate need. As one voice, let’s offer up our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now please remember that God’s promise is conditional on us changing our evil ways. Much LOVE!

…the wisest way to live this life…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him… (Uncle Charles – Dr. Charles Stanley). 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   4 November 2021 Psalm 50:14.

Psalm 50:14.     Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High:

Well hello there my beautiful Scrip-Bit Family! The grace, peace and LOVE of our great God be upon us this new and exciting day! And it is exciting simply because we are alive and kicking! Could you imagine what we’d be saying if we hadn’t woken up this morning… (smile) I don’t know. But I do know that many of us would not have been happy. Yes, it is good to go to heaven and meet our Saviour, but many of us are just not ready yet, and obviously the Lord isn’t ready for us either, otherwise He would have taken us home. That means He still has important work down here on earth for us to do. 

Therefore, let us declare as the psalmist so appropriately and joyfully did a long time ago…shout it out loud: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps. 118:24) And that should be our motto for each and every day that we draw breath on God’s great and wonderful, though evil and ungodly earth! Yes, friends, with Jesus leading our lives, we ought to be in a joyful mood for most of the day, despite our earthly problems, since He is the Giver and Comforter of our lives. 

And I like how Asaph the psalmist puts it on God’s behalf in Psalm 50 – titled God is the judge. He writes: ‘Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ (Ps. 50:14-15) Oh my people those are two of the basic foundational rules of our faith: Praise God and ask Him for help. One leads to the other. We can’t ask for help unless we give Him thanks and praise, adoration and reverence, acknowledging that He’s the Mightiest of the Mighty! 

Now, it won’t do any harm to look at a few scriptures that uphold that contention, would it? (smile) The prophet Hosea said it thus to his people Israel. ‘O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity. Take with you words, and turn to the Lord: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.’ (Hos. 14:2) 

And what does all of that mean. Listen to the scholars. ‘14:1-3. Calves of our lips: The word ‘calves’ (Heb. par, “a young bull or produce”) is best understood metaphorically, referring to the words that lips produce – in this context praise to the Lord. The nation had used its lips to praise the idolatrous calves; now it will use its lips in praise to the Lord God.’ 

But yuh know what? Sadly, that exact same iniquity can be placed at our feet. In the last thirty or so years we have indeed turned from the God of our fathers to idolatrous worship. Nowadays we worship everything from money to men, and yet we expect our society to flourish and prosper. We obviously have forgotten these most important words of Moses to the Israelites. ‘But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish (confirm) his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.’ (Deut. 8:18) 

And since the Lord our God does not change, it means that that condition still applies to all societies. Yes, societies can seem to get wealthy and opulent, but they never last, because the Good Book tells us in Psalm 127:1. ‘Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep (guards) the city, the watchman waketh (stays awake) but in vain.’ 

It doesn’t take a genius to understand that. Unless a society stands sincerely and securely on the Word of God, whatever it builds doesn’t last. And we are currently experiencing that awesome truth my brethren. Our society is crumbling fast, and the only thing that can stop it from going to hell in a handbasket is our turning back to the Lord our God. Or, as the author of Hebrews so wisely puts it: ‘By him (Jesus) therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name.’ (Heb. 13:15) 

Oh my people, that’s the wisest move we can make in these deeply troubled and sorrowful times. And it doesn’t take a lot of wisdom to realize it either, for we have tried everything else and nothing’s working for us, the strife, hatred, anger, sickness and misery are becoming worse every day. The only thing we haven’t yet tried is a return to our roots, to the God we used to reverence, adore and worship not so long ago. And these words of Eliphaz, Job’s supposed friend, when he mistakenly implored Job to repent do serve as a wonderful reminder to us today of what’s to be gained in serving the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 

Eliphaz said: ‘Acquaint now thyself with him (God), and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. Receive I pray thee, the law from his mouth, and lay up his words in thine heart. If thou return to the Almighty, thou shalt be built up, thou shalt put away iniquity far from thy tabernacles (tents, homes). Then shalt thou lay up gold as dust, and the gold of Ophir as the stones of the brooks. 

Yea, the Almighty shall be thy defense (gold), and thou shalt have plenty of silver. For then shalt thou have thy delight in the Almighty, and shalt lift up thy face unto God. Thou shalt make thy prayer unto him, and he shall hear thee, and thou shalt pay thy vows. Thou shalt also decree a thing, and it shall be established unto thee: and the light shall shine upon thy ways.’ (Job 22:21-28) 

Oh friends, it’s same basic advice that the Lord gave Joshua and every other prophet to speak unto the people: Honour me and I will make thy way safe and prosperous. But instead, we have chosen to dishonour God, even going so far as to try to get rid of Him from our society. But that‘s only a fool’s pipe dream! The Creator of the universe will never allow His foolish, prideful and arrogant creation to kick Him out of what He created, just like He did not allow that other fool, Lucifer, now known as Satan, the evil one, to kick Him out of heaven. 

So please, let’s wake up, be the wise creation that the Lord boasts of, and realize that our ONLY HOPE is God Almighty. And He is still so good to us, despite our terrible iniquity, because He so dearly LOVES us, that He showers those of us who want to work for Him with magnificent blessings to do that work. But since a blessing is not a blessing until it’s spoken out loud, let’s declare what we call our Thursday Blessings in loud voice to put them into effect. 

Altogether now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! 

I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to, will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and every day! Amen!’ 

And the corollary to that, is we now must go out and share all those blessings as generously with others as the Lord shared them with us. Much LOVE!

…the fear (reverential awe) of the Lord…is the beginning of knowledge…but fools despise wisdom and instruction… (Prov. 1:7) 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 December 2020 Mark 8:34.

Mark 8:34.     ​Whosoever will come after me (follow me), let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me.

Oh mih people, you’ll be so proud of the ole fella! Yes, yesterday afternoon, despite the inclement weather, I decided to go out in it. And yuh know what? Our God is so great and wonderful that just before I went out, all the precipitate that was precipitating stopped precipitating (smile) and the sun peeked out of the clouds! So I went out in much better weather and got all I wanted to do, some of which glorified Him, with no problems or complications whatsoever. Even in the beer store, where I accidentally dropped a six-pack of Guinness stout, the clerks cleaned it up for me and gave me another one! Glory be to His most holy name! 

That is what you get from sacrifice and obedience. And it wasn’t really a big sacrifice or anything of momentous obedience, just simple everyday stuff…so you can imagine what our wonderful God would do for us if we were to sacrifice big and be much more obedient? And even in the times when God’s people were supposed to offer animal sacrifices to Him, what did He say to them? 

The psalmist Asaph puts it this way in Psalm 50 – God is the judge: ‘If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fullness thereof. Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats? Offer unto God thanksgiving: and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble and I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ (Ps. 50:12-15) 

Meanwhile the prophet Hosea says it thus on the Lord’s behalf: ‘For I desired mercy (faithfulness), and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.’ (Hos. 6:6) And Cousin Sol wrote it thus in Proverbs: ‘To do justice and judgement (righteousness and justice) is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.’ (Prov. 21:3)

 So although sacrifice, in the form of burnt offerings were an important part of their worship, what the Lord really wanted was their faithfulness and knowledge of Him and their thanksgiving! It was more a personal sacrifice He desired; the effort they put out to know, to LOVE, to thank Him and to live obedient to His laws. And although today we don’t need any burnt offering sacrifices for Jesus has paid the whole debt with the sacrifice of His life, the Lord still needs personal commitment from His followers if His kingdom is going to survive and prosper. 

That’s why Jesus called the people and disciples unto Him and said to them. ‘Whosoever will come after me (follow me), let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me.’ (Mark 8:34) And that includes us as well my brethren. And that simply means we have to die to ourselves, stop being selfish, surrender our lives to Christ and be willing to undergo anything that comes across our path, knowing that He won’t allow us to bear more than we can tolerate, and will eventually work everything out for our good. 

But we have to be prepared to bear some ‘sufferation’ for living for Jesus is usually not a Sunday evening stroll in the park. For as He so rightly warned: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) So a life following Jesus will most likely have troubles and disappointments, but He has promised to take care of all who serve Him faithfully. Hear him after telling them about taking up their cross and following Him nuh. 

‘For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it. For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.’ (Mark 8:35-38) 

Ah friends, as usual, Jesus spells it out clearly and simply: If you want to follow Him, then you need to stop worrying about your own desires and worry about His work. And if you are ashamed of Him and His words, then when He comes in His glory, He will also be ashamed of you and leave you out. Oh my brethren, our bodies and the things of this earth are not the most important in our lives, for those things perish and are eventually destroyed by means of rot and moth, but our souls, that is the biggest treasure we have, so we need to look after them very carefully, for they live on through eternity. 

So we need to take Jesus’ advice very seriously. ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ (Matt. 10:28) That means we should be more afraid of God than men! But it doesn’t seem like we are, because we keep doing what men want us to do and not what God requires of us, and for that there WILL BE consequences, like being left on the outside looking into heaven during the long days of eternity. And believe me, that won’t be fun. 

Then let’s wake up and do what’s required of us nuh as supposed followers of Jesus; let’s sincerely walk the talk, so we don’t get left out of heaven. And to do that we need to first acknowledge God’s divine blessings on our lives, then put them into action. So let’s declare (steups!) our Thursday Blessings with much gusto. Altogether now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! 

I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Now it’s time to be as magnanimous and generous to others as God has been to us! Much LOVE!

…why kill your soul…when it can live on forever…in heaven with Christ… 

P.S. The lateness isn’t all my fault. Had to spend half an hour outside with a gentleman fixing my garage door opener. Oh, the joys of comfortable modern day living eh…but are the headaches and costs worth it when they break down…? Who knows eh? (smile) Much LOVE! 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 July 2020 Psalm 50:15.

Psalm 50:15.     ​And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.
 
Oh friends, please sing with me: ‘Monday morning is come, so we rocking and rolling; That’s how we do it, when Monday morning comes. We get up and give thanks, and prepare to enjoy the day, whatever the weather… whatever the circumstances. That’s because, the One who made us…and still LOVES us, despite our many flaws and weaknesses, is looking out, for all those who call Him Lord and Saviour! 
 
Under His mighty wings, we run for refuge and comfort, when the storms of life assail us, assured that He will calm them, and heal our wounded souls, because all storms respond to His calming influence. So that’s why we sing: Is Monday morning…and we rocking and rolling. Yes, is Monday morning, and we rocking and rolling…we rocking and rolling…forever…with Jesus… yes forever…with Jesus…!’ 
 
Ah mih people, I do hope that you all like my li’l ditty! (smile) And it’s how we ought to greet Mondays – with joy and great promise… As Asaph the psalmist says: ‘Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ (Ps. 50:14-15) It could not get any clearer and more straightforward than that my friends. 
 
So since we’ve offered thanksgiving, now let’s call upon the Lord in our time of very serious trouble. Let’s take our concerns to the heavenly throne, where Jesus, our intercessor is waiting to plead our case before the Father. In confident though humble voices and spirits, let’s declare (steups!) our Monday Morning Battle Hymn.
 
‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive, and hopefully haven’t contracted the virus that’s causing havoc around our world. And our anxieties have been recently deepened because some restrictions have been lifted in the lockdown, so more of us are going out to work now without any guarantees of safety. Then to complicate matters Father, suddenly, and unexpectedly, just like the virus, worldwide strife and protests have also struck us in this sad time of pandemic, and we don’t have a clue how to handle either situation properly.
 
Mass confusion is currently prevailing in our world, and we desperately need your help to solve both problems, as You are the ONLY One with the power and insight to successfully handle them. Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face.
 
That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction. Please show us how to successfully handle these scourges that are currently plaguing Your beautiful earth. Please help our leaders to wisely quell the strife and protests, thus bringing unity, peaceful consensus and real improvement in the areas that are now sadly lacking. Please help the scientists to also find a positive solution, a sure antidote to the virus as quickly as possible. And for those who have already contracted the virus, or been injured in the strife, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them.
 
Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’
 
And now that we’ve placed our problems in Jesus’ capable hands, let’s get some further reassurance from the Lord’s Word. Hear the sons of Korah. ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (abundantly available help). Therefore will we not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried away into the midst (the heart) of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.  Selah.’ (Ps. 46:1-3)
 
And if you don’t believe the sons of Korah, then listen to Bruh David nuh. ‘The righteous cry, and the Lord heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles. The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit (crushed in spirit). Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all. He keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken. Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate (condemned or held guilty). The Lord redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate (condemned).’ (Ps. 34:17-22)
 
Oh Bubba! How much more assurance do we need before we put our absolute trust in Almighty God eh? But just in case we do need some more, (smile) let’s hear from the sons of Korah again. ‘Come behold the works of the Lord, what desolations he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire. Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.  Selah.’ (Ps. 46:8-11)
 
Now with all of that confidence and assurance ringing in our hearts and souls, let’s go out and enjoy the day the Lord has made, as we do good and worthwhile ambassadorial work in His holy and wonderful name! Much LOVE!
 
…the joy of the Lord…is the believer’s unfailing strength…